What is hair? Is it just a follicle on the top of one’s head? Or is it a piece of you that evokes certain feelings? The natural hair journey is a unique experience for anyone who goes through it. For some it’s a straightforward journey and for others there’s a lot to unpack.
This project allowed 11 people to relive and share their natural hair journeys-from their struggles to their triumphs. Below is four of the 11 for part one of the natural hair stories series.
Uju Onochie went to a predominantly white school for part of her childhood and she hated it. Being one of the few black kids in class, she remembered seeing the white girls’ hair and she’d play with it. Thoughts of “why can’t my hair be like this?” would circle her head as her fingers brushed through the girls’ hair. (Click the image above to read her full story)
AMHERST – On Thursday, Mar. 7, the University of Massachusetts Amherst celebrated women around the world with an “International Women’s Day Celebration.” The event, coordinated by the Center for Women & Community, was held in New Africa House, with special food, speakers, and performances from 4 to 6 p.m.
“It’s empowerment in a positive sense,” said Sarah Danforth, educator advocate for CWC, when discussing how the event brings connections between women through networking. She discussed that she’s attended the event to have first hand “meaningful work [to be] connected on this campus.”
Open to all, the event hosted around 60 persons, including women of all ethnicities, a few men, and even children – most took turns coloring in pictures of their favorite inspirational women, such as Frida Kahlo.
On Friday, Mar. 1, the Latinx American Cultural Center hosted graphic novelist Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez for a talk about La Borinqueña, a comic book series he created that features one of the few Afro-Latina superheroes.
La Borinqueña stars Marisol Rios De La Luz, a Nuyorican (New York-born Puerto Rican) and Columbia University student who studies abroad for a semester at the University of Puerto Rico. While there, she explores the caves on the island and finds five crystals, all of which give La Luz individual powers such as superhuman strength, the power of flight, and control of the storms. With her newfound powers, La Luz adopts the superhero name La Borinquena, inspired by Puerto Rico’s national anthem, and works alongside the community to create social change.
As students walked into the LACC, they were greeted with a Puerto Rican flag and the alluring smell of Puerto Rican food prior to the talk. Later during his speech, Miranda-Rodriguez talked about the reasoning for hanging up the flag and serving food was to bring a home feeling to the event.
#1 Lately, presently feeling surreal Something I am doing, or not? How can I fix it, or not? Is it the flower? Is it the sleep? Is it the isolation? Are these explanations or the solution? Interrogating myself, my care, my love How do I relate Or not? Feeling my eyes lowering tingling forcing my body to relax, ease the tense of the day or prepare for it Take in the fatigue, the euphoria all at once know that whatever you may call it it is something felt and that may be enough for now.
#2 Stop trying to write the universe. Let the universe speak in all the ways even the mundane can open up galaxies.
#3 The things we do not know are mysteries quite literally If and only if one is in pursuit of Truth If not, Ignorance may very well be bliss but it will never fix the pain of tomorrow’s unknown Or enjoy its beauty I live to seek and I will surely find Truth through the mysteries and Unfortunate events of life.